We know that the Sony PlayStation 5 will support backwards compatibility in some form, but it’s an open question as to how much. All we know at the moment is that the PS5 will support the “overwhelming majority of PS4 games” – but what does that mean for the PS3?
Will PS5 play PS3 games?
Although this hasn’t been confirmed yet, my educated guess would be “yes” – albeit a heavily caveated one.
I’ll immediately clarify that I don’t think the PS5 will have native support for PS3 games. However, Sony has invested heavily in remote streaming in recent years, purchasing both OnLive and Gakai before GeForce Now and Google Stadia even existed.
These technologies eventually became PlayStation Now: a subscription service that lets you stream a number of PS2, PS3 and even PS4 titles to your PlayStation 4. There are over 650 games on there, including a number of PS3 titles such as Ni No Kuni, Resistance 3 and Red Dead Redemption. Given PlayStation Now already works on Windows PC, it would be astonishing if it wasn’t available on PS5 from the get go.
Obviously that doesn’t include every PS3 game or anything like it. Fortunately, the best PS3 games have been given the remastering treatment for PS4, and hopefully that means they will work from your current discs with the backwards compatibility that has been promised.
A non-exhaustive list of titles that have been remade so far:
- Assassin’s Creed: The Ezio Collection
- Batman: Return to Arkham
- Burnout Paradise: Remastered
- Bulletstorm: Full Clip Edition
- Bioshock: The Collection
- Borderlands: The Handsome Collection
- Darksiders: Warmastered Edition
- Darksiders 2: Deathinitive Edition
- Dark Souls: Remastered
- Devil May Cry 4: Special Edition
- God of War 3: Remastered
- Grand Theft Auto V
- Injustice: Gods Among Us Ultimate Edition
- LA Noire
- Metro Redux
- Okami HD
- Heavy Rain/Beyond: Two Souls
- Star Ocean: The Last Hope
- Sleeping Dogs: Definitive Edition
- The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Special Edition
- The Last of Us Remastered
- Tomb Raider: Definitive Edition
- Uncharted: The Nathan Drake Collection
- Valkyria Chronicles Remastered
- WipEout Omega Collection
What about my PS3 discs?
I wouldn’t hold my breath, personally. Even the Xbox One has limited support for Xbox 360 games, and short of putting all the original PS3 hardware inside the PS5 (which obviously brings the cost up), Sony simply won’t be able to guarantee compatibility.
Your best bet is probably to buy a pre-owned PS3 to ensure you can carry on playing your old favourites. At £50 to £100 on eBay, they’re not even that expensive any more…